A Most Violent Year

A Most Violent Year ★★★★

One of the early credits in the opening is for visual effects, so naturally I assume that was needed for erasing the modernness of the New York skyline and whatnot, and boy is it seamless. This movie drops you directly into 1981 and I was a pig in shit loving the retro vibes. I heard on The Treatment that a lot of this was filmed in Detroit where the city decay is still abundant, but I still bought it as that old, ugly New York. The bridge scene, particularly the shot of the guy deciding to run and the camera starts rapidly pulling back, still composed but beautifully urgent. That was pretty much the highlight for me. I love the two lead actors in pretty much everything but their characters were a little closed off to me. I didn't ultimately care about their aspirations or their fate. They weren't just cold, but rather vacant. I think another watch will help smooth out those bumps, knowing where things end. Oscar Isaac is channeling Pacino but he's lacking a human center. I'm not asking for Isaac's Dog Day Afternoon where every little character facet is pinpointed and revealed, but I was definitely on the outside looking in at him. He's the full-bodied surface level business man, the nice suits, the clean shave, the appearance and maybe that's the point. I plan to watch this again, if only to bask in the undeniable 80sness, but I admired a lot about the story too. Just a gorgeous movie.

Colin the dude liked this review